7 min read
05 May

Even with multiple sports cars and luxury exotics in the garage, a reliable family car is more a necessity than a luxury in today's fast-paced world. A dependable daily driver you can rely on for something as routine as school runs and grocery shopping or as critical as emergency hospital visits and family vacations is non-negotiable. 

It doesn’t mean the most reliable cars never have problems: They excel in fuel economy, safety features, interior accommodation, and maintenance costs. Advancements in technology and automotive engineering have made it possible for several car models to tick all or most of these boxes. 

The Toyota Camry, for example, is well-known globally for its excellent reliability and safety ratings. So are other models like the Honda Accord and Subaru Outback SUV. Below are 13 of the most reliable family cars and SUVs on the market right now. 

Volkswagen T-Roc

  • Known for its sporty style and overall reliability
  • Common faults include electrics, safety kit, and interior trim quality
Reliable family cars: Volkswagen T-Roc

The Volkswagen T-Roc is a stylish small SUV with a unique design and striking LED headlights. It competes for a share in the compact SUV segment against models like the Ford Puma and Audi Q2, armed with a comfortable ride and high-set driving position. Engine options include a 1.0 TSI 110, known for its low-end torque. 

A reliability rating of 88.34% means the T-Roc competes well among small SUVs. Safety features like autonomous emergency braking and lane assist contribute to the SUV's five-star Euro NCAP rating. The R-Line trim level comes with sportier elements like a stiffer suspension. Inside, soft-touch materials and updated tech create a premium feel. 

Citroen C4

  • Offers good reliability with a satisfaction rate of 96.28%
Reliable family cars: Citroen C4.

The Citroën C4 offers a unique blend of hatchback and SUV qualities, emphasizing comfort and distinct styling. The C4’s comfortable ride and low noise levels are ideal for long journeys. The 1.2-liter turbo producing 100 hp to 155 horsepower is enough for daily city commuting. 

While the various trim levels bring features like LED headlights and touchscreen infotainment, the trunk space is noticeably smaller versus rivals. Yet, the C4’s suspension ensures a soft ride and elevated seating position, as safety features, including lane-keep assist and emergency braking, enhance the driving experience. 

Chrysler Pacifica

  • Voted as the best minivan for families in the Parents' 2024 Best Family Cars Awards
  • It offers a choice of front or all-wheel drive
Reliable family cars: Chrysler Pacifica.

The Chrysler Pacifica has earned the respect of the minivan segment with its superior efficiency, spacious cabin, and family-friendly features. The Pacifica’s design easily adapts to various transportation needs thanks to its eight-passenger accommodation and innovative Stow 'n Go seating. 

Thoughtful amenities like a rear entertainment system, built-in vacuum, and USB ports promote the Pacifica’s family-centric design. It has earned high ratings from safety organizations thanks to advanced technologies, including lane departure warning and automatic emergency braking. 

An intuitive infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto keeps passengers connected and entertained. The Pacifica offers a smooth ride and optional all-wheel drive for added stability despite its size. 

Its hybrid version leads the entire market in fuel efficiency and reduced emissions. The Pacifica's expert blend of comfort, safety, technology, and efficiency cements its recognition as the best family minivan

Toyota Camry

  • Known for its reliability and comfort
Reliable family cars: Toyota Camry.

The Toyota Camry is a renowned midsize sedan celebrated for its reliability, comfort, and practicality. A track record of durability and low maintenance costs makes the Camry a dependable choice for individuals or families. It boasts a smooth ride, a well-insulated cabin, and supportive seats for comfort on long and short trips. 

The Camry strikes an impressive balance between performance and efficiency with its engine options, including fuel-efficient four-cylinders and powerful V6s. The Camry flaunts quality materials and ergonomic design inside its modern, spacious cabin, including a user-friendly infotainment system with connectivity options like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. 

With multiple trim levels to meet diverse budgets and tastes, the Toyota Camry reinforces its status as a long-term investment with a strong resale value. 

Honda Accord

  • A reliable and spacious sedan well-suited for families
Reliable family cars: Honda Accord.

The Honda Accord midsize sedan is cherished for its attractive mix of reliability, comfort, and longevity. The Accord’s historically durable build and lasting performance are well-known in the industry. Like the Camry, the Accord boasts a spacious, well-insulated cabin with supportive seats and ample legroom. 

The in-car tech is up to the minute, including Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and other connectivity and entertainment systems. It promises responsive handling and smooth acceleration, whether equipped with smaller-displacement engine options or powerful V6s. 

Thanks to its reliability and quality construction, the Honda Accord's great resale value makes it a solid investment for families looking for a dependable, comfortable, and technologically advanced midsize sedan. 

Subaru Legacy

  • Provides a safe and reliable driving experience for families
Reliable family cars: Subaru Legacy.

The 2024 Subaru Legacy excels as a family-oriented midsize sedan. The standard all-wheel drive and advanced safety features like Subaru's EyeSight Technology are highlights that further reinforce that car’s reputation for reliability, comfort, and safety. 

The Legacy is an excellent choice if your priority is long-term performance and durability. Its spacious interior offers adjustable seating and user-friendly controls, complemented by connectivity features like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. 

The engine options, including a turbocharged variant, are mostly praised by critics. More importantly, the Legacy maintains competitive pricing despite its robust features, making it an excellent value to families. 


  • Offers a good balance of reliability, performance, and comfort for family use
Reliable family cars: Mazda6

The 2024 Mazda6 offers families a stylish midsize sedan with a balance of performance and convenience features. It promises an engaging driving experience with its potent turbocharged engine and luxurious burgundy leather upholstery. 

While its advanced safety features promote passenger well-being, some reviewers note occasional harsh ride quality and relatively higher fuel consumption in urban conditions. With prices ranging from $36,140 to $55,535, the new Mazda6 competes well in its segment. 

Mazda's strong reputation for reliability and safety, reflected in high user satisfaction ratings and a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating, makes it an appealing family car. 

The lure of a spacious interior, smart safety features, and low running costs are enough to win over many families. The infotainment system is reportedly outdated, but the Mazda6's excellent value proposition remains solid. 

Kia Optima (K5)

  • Known for its reliability and value
Reliable family cars: Kia K5.

The 2024 Kia K5, formerly known as the Optima, maintains a strong value proposition in the midsize sedan segment, armed with a modern design and advanced technology. It competes well in its class thanks to a balanced mix of a bold exterior design, various engine choices, and a well-appointed interior. 

It compensates for its occasional firm ride quality on rough roads and limited availability of high-end features with user-friendly infotainment and safety features. Kia's improved reputation for reliability, backed by positive user satisfaction ratings and a generous warranty, adds to the K5’s appeal as a reliable family car. 

Hyundai Sonata

  • Offers reliability, comfort, and a good range of features for families
Reliable family cars: Hyundai Sonata.

The 2024 Hyundai Sonata midsize sedan is ideal for many users. It flaunts a modern exterior design, a spacious and well-appointed interior, and an advanced infotainment system.

 While some reviewers note a slightly firm ride quality on rough roads and limited availability of high-end features compared to premium competitors, the Sonata remains competitive within and outside its segment. Hyundai's reputation for reliability and positive user satisfaction ratings, coupled with a generous warranty package, further solidifies Sonata’s appeal as a family car. 

Ford Fusion

  • A reliable sedan with a spacious interior
Reliable family cars: Ford Fusion.

The Ford Mondeo, a beloved midsize sedan in Australia, is perfect for individuals and families thanks to its compelling blend of comfort, performance, and technology. While some reviewers have mentioned problems with the sensors and transmission, consistent servicing can mitigate these concerns. 

Overall, customers praise the Mondeo for its comfortable ride, fuel efficiency, and value for money. As for the Ford Fusion, it saw its last model year in North America in 2020. Ford discontinued the Fusion driven by declining sedan sales and a strategic realignment towards trucks, SUVs, and electric vehicles. 

The average used price for a 2020 Ford Fusion in good condition ranges from approximately $15,000 to $25,000, depending on the mileage, trim level, and location. 

Nissan Altima

  • Known for its reliability and fuel efficiency
Reliable family cars: Nissan Altima.

Some praised the 2024 Nissan Altima’s roomy cabin, available all-wheel drive, and decent fuel economy, while others expressed concern over its engine noise, sluggish acceleration, and ride quality, particularly with 19-inch wheels. Despite these drawbacks, the Altima is a capable family sedan offering a relaxed driving experience. 

Competing with popular models like the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord, the Altima maintains a solid reliability track record, earning above-average scores from J.D. Power and Consumer Reports. Additionally, the optional all-wheel drive enhances its versatility for tackling various road conditions. 

Chevrolet Malibu

  • Offers reliability and comfort
Reliable family cars: Chevrolet Malibu.

The 2024 Chevrolet Malibu received mixed reviews, praised for its roomy seating space and affordable starting price but criticized for its outdated cabin and underwhelming engine performance. 

Despite standard rear parking sensors as a new feature, the car struggles to compete with rivals in terms of interior quality and driving dynamics. The Chevy Malibu’s reliability varies among model years, but Consumer Reports expects the current model to have about average reliability compared to other new cars. 

Subaru Outback

  • Combines reliability, safety, and versatility
Reliable family cars: Subaru Outback.

Reviewers are full of praise for the 2024 Subaru Outback, thanks to its spacious cabin, optional turbocharged engine, off-road capabilities, and practical features like roof rails. 

While some critics mention slow acceleration from the standard engine and problems with the auto stop-start system, the Outback’s new features for 2024 compensate for these shortcomings. For example, the modest styling revisions for the Wilderness trim and standardization of previously optional features are compelling bonus points.

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